Oat and Barberry Biscuits


This recipe is based on the Anzac biscuit with the addition of dried barberries that have been plumped up in hot water and brown sugar. A barberry is a small red berry similar to a red currant, and is often used in Middle Eastern cuisines; it has a slightly acidic flavour. At the Bakery, we press the biscuits down to make them very thin.


  • 165 g ( oz/1⅔ cups) rolled (porridge) oats
  • 220 g ( oz) plain (all-purpose) flour
  • 100 g ( oz) desiccated coconut
  • 210 g ( oz) soft brown sugar
  • 50 g ( oz) dried barberries
  • 45 ml ( fl oz) boiling water
  • 185 g ( oz) unsalted butter
  • 60 g ( oz) golden syrup or honey
  • teaspoons bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)
  • 60 ml (2 fl oz/¼ cup) water


Preheat the oven to 170°C (325°F/Gas 3).

Put the oats, flour, coconut and 175 g (6 oz) of the sugar into a bowl and mix well to combine.

Put the barberries in a bowl with the remaining sugar and pour in the boiling water, stirring a little to dissolve the sugar.

Put the butter and golden syrup in a saucepan over low heat and stir until the butter has melted. Add the barberries and syrup. Remove from the heat. Combine the bicarbonate of soda with the water and stir into the pan. Pour the wet ingredients onto the dry ingredients while still foaming and mix together with a large spoon.

Take 3 tablespoons of the mixture at a time and roll into even-sized balls — you should make about 12 balls in total. Place the balls on baking trays lined with baking paper and press down using a thin metal spatula to make very thin rounds. Bake the biscuits, in batches, for 15–20 minutes each. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on the trays. These biscuits can be stored for up to 1 week in an airtight container.